Adapting to a ketogenic lifestyle can take some re-working of your habits and a new perspectiveon how you approach meals and snacks.
But, no matter how you were eating before, most of the foods that are the pillars ofa keto diet are things you’re already familiar with — we’re just helping you learn touse them in slightly different ways to promote ketosis in your body.
Though there are hundreds of foods that fit into a keto diet, there are some that arethe true rock stars of the bunch.Here are our top 10 most versatile and healthful foods for the ketogenic diet:
High in protein and low in carbs, eating eggs has been shown to help promote a feelingof fullness, and egg yolks contain thirteen essential vitamins and minerals, as well asantioxidants.While eggs were once demonized for their relatively high levels of cholesterol, we now know thatconsuming them doesn’t raise blood cholesterol levels in most people, and can actually reducethe risk of heart disease.
To incorporate some eggs into your morning routine, try our Chorizo Baked Eggs recipeand save the rest for a super quick and easy to take breakfast.
2- Olives and olive oil:
These heart-healthy little fruits are bursting with antioxidantsand anti-inflammatory compounds.A one-ounce serving contains two grams of total carbs.
Stock your pantry with extra-virgin olive oil, which is one of the healthiest oils forbaking, cooking and deep-frying at high temperatures.
3- Meat, poultry and seafood:
In addition to being low in carbs, and high in fat and protein,meat contains nutrients, like vitamin B12, creatine and taurine, that aren’t foundin plants.
Shellfish and fish contain anti-inflammatory omega 3s that are associated with improvedmental health and decreased risk of disease.
If you want a fun and simple dinner that the whole family can enjoy, try our Baked ItalianMeatballs using ground beef.Choose 100% grass-fed pasture-raised red meat, pasture-raised poultry and sustainably farmedor caught seafood.
Not only is this better for the animals and the environment, meat from humanely raisedanimals is typically more nutrient-dense.
4- High-fat dairy:
High-fat dairy contains quality protein, vitamins and minerals, and somethingcalled “conjugated linoleic acid,” which is one of the few fatty acids that promotesfat loss.
Some studies suggest that a moderate amount of high-fat dairy helps reduce the risk ofheart attack and stroke.
High fat and very little carbs make high-fat dairy a keto winner!Try full-fat cream and sour cream, butter and ghee, soft cheeses like mascarpone andcream cheese and hard cheeses like jack and cheddar.
5- Dark chocolate:
Scientifically speaking, real chocolate (not the processed stuff with tonsof sugar) isn’t the “sinful” treat it’s often made out to be.In fact, dark chocolate is loaded with antioxidants and flavanols that can decrease blood pressure,heart disease risk and insulin resistance.Just be sure that there are no sugars and a minimal amount of carbs per serving, andenjoy sparingly.
Berries are some of the healthiest and most keto-friendly fruits.Blueberries have been shown to improve memory and brain function, while raspberries andblackberries are packed with antioxidants that reduce inflammation.
Remember to eat berries in moderation, as they do contain carbs.
Make a sweet treat to include some berries into your diet by freezing up some Berry BombPops using raspberries and blueberries.
Garlic, onions, leeks and other alliums are prized in most cuisines for their aromaticflavors.They also contain allicin, a potent plant compound that protects the body from braindamage and disease.
These veggies tend to be rather high in net carbs, but, used in small quantities, theyare great for enhancing the flavor and nutrition of your keto cooking.
8- Cruciferous vegetables:
Broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage and other cruciferous veggies containhigh levels of vitamins K and A, as well as a special compound called sulforaphane.Once digested, sulforaphane can help detoxify the body and protect cells from oxidativestress.
We also love cruciferous vegetables for their low carb counts and amazing versatility.Craving an old favorite at dinner?
Whip up a batch of Easy Creamy Cauliflower Mashed Potatoes.You won’t even miss the real thing!
9- Coconut oil:
Though very high in saturated fat, coconut oil has been found to help lowercholesterol and promote the loss of belly fat, thanks to medium-chain triglycerides.
MCTs are absorbed directly by the liver and converted into ketones, which can help decreasecalorie consumption, increase energy levels, and even improve brain function.
10- Nuts and seeds:
Rich in fiber and minerals, nuts and seeds are also associated with reducedrisk of heart disease, certain cancers, depression and obesity.
We suggest avoiding nut and seeds oils, which contain high levels of inflammatory omega6s, and choose whole or freshly ground nuts and seeds instead.Some of the best seeds and nuts for the keto diet are macadamia and brazil nuts, pecans,walnuts and almonds, and pumpkin, sunflower and flax seeds.